Frankly speaking, keeping attendees at the webinar is more difficult compared to a live presentation. When at an offline event, visitors may feel uncomfortable when leaving. But to leave a webinar, it is enough to simply close the web browser tab. How can audience’s attention be retained from the first till the last minute of the broadcast? Here are 10 ways to achieve it.
Any visitor retaining methods are forceless against ordinary and advertisement content. Visitors wait for useful and actual knowledge to be delivered by the presenter, but not for loose talk. Share pieces of advice and lifehacks with your participants. This is the only way you can ignite interest in your audience.
The attention of participants can hardly be retained if the presenter uses terminology that is difficult to the audience. Do your best to you’re your thoughts in layman’s terms.
Communicate with your audience
Human mind reacts to questions immediately. When asked, people are instinctively trying to answer, event silently if not allowed. That is why you need to ask questions during your webinar every 5-10 minutes. They help to retain the attention of your visitors.
Demonstrate presentations and pictures
It is hard to concentrate only on the presenter’s voice for a long time: a person starts thinking about its own matters and gets distracted. That is why you need to supply your talk with visual elements: show keynotes, schemes, tables, photos. Be sure to select simple images, as otherwise people will be staring at pictures instead of listening to your presentation.
Moreover, visual elements will help participants to better master the webinar material. Science proves that a human being perceives only 15% of information by ear. But when it sees and listens to the same simultaneously, the perception level rises to 65%.
Psychologists claim that a human being is able to concentrate on one process for 25 minutes. After that, it needs several minutes to have rest or change its activity. To retain the attention of visitors at a webinar, interchange different modes of the webinar room. For example, if you started with a keynote, consider playing video of conducting a poll afterwards.
Stories from other people’s lives find great resonance among the audience. At your webinar, share your experience, as well as stories of your clients, colleagues or celebrities. It will help visitors connecting your story to the reality, consequently making them believe and listen to you more attentively.
Do not be afraid of sharing a negative experience. Sometimes it can teach far quicker and better than the positive one.
This is one of the simplest and the most effective ways of attracting the attention of the audience. By becoming silent the presenter makes attendees pay attention to it. During the pause, the webinar participants get their thoughts back to the presentation and concentrate on the presenter’s words.
Watch the sound
Unusual sounds during a broadcast, like noises, echo or notifications on your computer or phone will definitely distract your listeners from the presentation. This is why you need to eliminate the distracting sounds: select a quality headset, switch off your phone, ask your colleagues not to disturb you.
When listeners hear something provoking, they get active immediately. Provocation pushes participants to be re-included into the discussion process. For example, you could state that in several years smartphones would completely supersede computers (sure thing, this is not true). After that, you could ask your listeners whether they agree with this statement.
Be sure not to overdo with provocations, as the audience will become disappointed and will lose trust in you.
Change tempo and rhythm
One more method to retain the attention of listeners at a webinar is to change tempo and rhythm of your speech. For example, you can slow down or accelerate your speech tempo, speak louder or calmer, lower or increase your voice tone. The main thing is to spot the balance and not to change your webinar into an actor play.
Anecdotes of funny stories can make visitors’ attention livelier. Humor in the middle of presentation draws interest and is well memorized, while professional jokes can strengthen the trust of the audience.
Anecdotes should be appropriate — no grim humour and naughty jokes.
The above-suggested pieces of advice will help you awake the visitors’ interest and hold interesting and memorable webinars.
MyOwnConference blog. Lifehacks, reviews, useful tips for preparing, holding and promoting webinars and web conferences.